Phone call leads German Twp. police to seize meth, guns, cash in vehicle search

GERMAN TWP. — German Township Police seized more than four pounds of meth as well as a large amount of cash and guns after getting a call of possible shoplifting at a Rural King on Upper Valley Pike outside of Springfield.

Police questioned two men in a SUV and saw an AK-47 in the back of the car which prompted police to take the men into custody and obtain a search warrant to search the rest of the car.

Lt. Russell Garman of the German Township Police said they recovered 8 guns including 2 that were stolen. A handgun was stolen out of Illinois, the other, a 9mm assault rifle, is from Pickaway County, south of Columbus.

Police also found a significant of ammunition including eight loaded clips of armor piercing bullets that Lt. Garman said could go through a bullet proof vest or a vehicle.

“The individuals that we took into custody admitted to me that they were doing meth that day so luckily no one got injured or harm with the weapons in the vehicle,” Lt. Garman said. “Obviously they had the capability to do some damage with that type of weaponry that they had.”

Along with the 8 guns, police found $11,000 in cash and more than four pounds of, what appears to be, methamphetamine in the vehicle. 3 grams is enough for a 3rd degree felony charge, 300 grams of meth would result in a 1st degree felony, this seizure included 1900 grams of meth.

It is believed to be the largest seizure of meth in the history of German Township.

The drugs were concealed in boxes for ordinary items like pancake mix and cookies.

“They had a large amount of methamphetamine that was packaged covertly so if an officer stopped them they wouldn’t be opening cookie boxes and other stuff like that expecting to find methamphetamine,” Lt. Garman said. “They were sealed well and the looked like they were never opened.”

The two men were both from California, one of the men, James Butler, is a known gang member with a history of drug and gun related charges according to the department.

Garman said police responded on April 28th to the Rural King at 1476 Upper Valley Pike and got the description of the people and vehicle from the store manager.

With the firepower, drugs, and history Lt. Garman said this could have ended much differently.

“For this community to see people running around with drugs and those types of weapons, they’re not use to that.”

The German Township Police are working with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in this investigation that remains ongoing.

James Rider

I was born in Virginia and have moved several times in my life as a member of an Air Force family. I've lived in Virginia, California, Germany, England, and Ohio. I graduated from Centerville High School and then went on to attend Ball State University where I graduated with a bachelor's degree.